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Cleanliness Is Next To…6 Basic Tasks To Do Everyday

Cleanliness Is Next To…6 Basic Tasks To Do Everyday

Are you a clean, mean, green housecleaning machine? We all have housekeeping habits that we complete every day. These habits help keep our nests healthy, clean and comfortable. Basic everyday tasks also prevent small cleaning projects from becoming big messes.

I found this list on Martha Stewart’s website and thought it would be interesting to see if MS and I share any similar affections for daily housekeeping.

6 Things To Do Everyday

1. Make the Bed

MS: Tidiness begets tidiness. A crisply made bed makes the whole room seem more orderly, which makes it less likely that you’ll let other things — such as clothes and papers — pile up around it.

RCF: I totally agree and I would add: Make it the culture of your home to help teach your children to make their beds. If you do it, most likely they’ll get in the habit of making their beds and continue throughout their whole lives.

2. Manage Clutter

MS: Whenever you leave a room, take a quick look around for anything that isn’t where it should be. Pick it up and put it where it belongs. Insist that everyone in the household do the same.

RCF: Well, managing clutter every time you leave a room is a lofty idea. I’m not sure how reasonable it is to make it an enforceable expectation that everyone in your household pick up and put away stuff when they leave a room.

3. Sort the Mail

MS: Take a few minutes to open, read, and sort mail as soon as you bring it inside. Keep a trash bin near your sorting area for junk mail. Drop other mail into one of four in-boxes: personal correspondence, bills, catalogs, and filing.

RCF: OK, I like the DIY box idea, but don’t forget to recycle junk mail.

4. Clean as You Cook

MS: Instead of filling the sink with pots and dishes, wash them or put them in the dishwasher as you prepare a meal.

RCF: It’s a nice idea to clean the kitchen as you cook; it certainly would speed up the clean up. However, I would not advocate for turning on the faucet every time you finish with a dish– that seems like a waste of water. Wait until you have a pile, and then wash.

5. Wipe Up Spills While They’re Fresh

MS: Whether it’s tomato sauce on the cooktop or makeup on the bathroom counter, almost anything is faster and easier to remove if you attend to it immediately.

RCF: Unequivocally agree.

6. Sweep the Kitchen Floor

MS: Every evening, once you’ve finished washing up after dinner, sweep the floor. This will keep tough-to-clean dirt and grime from building up, which will make the weekly mopping much quicker.

RCF: Nice idea, but every day seems like a bit much. Also, my dogs do a pretty good job of pre-washing the floor during food prep times.

What are your thoughts? Is this list similar to your daily cleaning tasks? What six things do you do everyday to keep your home sparkling?

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Ronnie Citron-Fink

Ronnie Citron-Fink is a writer, editor and educator. She has written hundreds of articles about sustainable living, the environment, design, and family life for websites, books and magazines. Ronnie is the creator of Econesting, and the managing editor of Moms Clean Air Force. Ronnie was named one of the Top Ten Living Green Experts by Yahoo. Ronnie lives in New York with her family.


+ add your own
10:09AM PDT on May 26, 2012


10:02AM PDT on May 26, 2012

always scan areas and see what can be done in 5 minutes or less.You will be surprised what can be done in 5 minutes !

3:47PM PDT on Oct 13, 2011

In Phoenix, when you're conscientous, you avoid wasting water. I don't have a dishwasher and I don't want one. I love
the simple life.

I pile my dishes in the sink in a tidy manner and wash them when I've gathered a reasonable amount. It's responsibility, not laziness, to do it that way.

Dishes in the sink can be a sign of responsibility.

7:29AM PDT on Apr 29, 2011

I think the toughest one on the list for me is making the bed! It seems so simple, but it's true that if you were raised with the habit it sticks... and when you weren't, it's harder to remember than flossing.

5:28AM PDT on Apr 28, 2011

thanks for sharing.

10:58AM PDT on Apr 26, 2011

Good old fashioned common sense. Something many people seem to be sorely lacking these days. How sad. Thanks.

7:35AM PST on Jan 29, 2011

Good common-sense tips that are helpful and what about enjoying the satisfaction of a job well-done.

It's so nice to know after you've cooked dinner and put the last dish away that everything is in it's place and looks nice. :)

5:11AM PST on Nov 7, 2010

My mother taught me all of these things back in 1942 and they have served me well for the last 68 years. Clean as you go. Every night after supper dishes were done, my sister and I wiped down all the counters, table, chairs, and swept the floor. We did this from about about age 6 on. When i cook, i fill up the sink and drop the dirty dishes in as I use them. I use the same cleaning solution that Shannon B does - water, vinegar, tea tree oil, + essential lemon oil. Vinegar is great at killing bacteria. Get rid of the sponges, or else rinse well to get out food particles, and stand them up as recommended to dry them out overnight. Even if you boil them or put them in Clorox/Javex, after a while they just stink from being wet and filled with small food particles. I think it is a great idea to have a DAILY ROUTINE OF CHORES. It looks nice and gives you a good feeling.

3:24PM PDT on Oct 4, 2010

I will commit to addressing each of my untidiness one by one!

5:57AM PDT on Jul 23, 2010

Common Sense

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